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Looking to make a splash with some water-based fun?

Easily commutable by rail, Leeds occupies two docks connected by a canal that runs through the middle of the city and stretches all the way to Liverpool. From wild water swimming to boat taxis, there are multiple opportunities for people of all abilities to enjoy the water!

To help you #GoDoYourThing, we’ve put together our guide to the best aqua activities in the centre of Leeds.

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Diving in headfirst – try wild water swimming at Leeds Dock! Not only is open water swimming an opportunity to reconnect with nature, but it is also scientifically proven to improve overall health and happiness. In partnership with Love Open Water and NOWCA, swimming is now a permanent fixture at Leeds Dock with sessions every Wednesday (6pm – 8pm), Friday (10am – 12:30pm) and Saturday (9am – 11:30am). Book a swim at Love Open Water Leeds Dock by becoming a NOWCA member for £15 per year.

Make a splash with stand-up paddleboarding, also available at Leeds Dock. An exciting urban outdoor adventure, paddleboard through the heart of Leeds Dock and out into the Leeds & Liverpool canal for a unique and unforgettable experience! This year-round opportunity is open to all ages and abilities, with instructor led sessions available. If you would like to take part, make an enquiry through their Facebook group

For a scenic views of the city from the water, catch a ride on one of Leeds’ famous yellow boat taxis! Exit the train station via the New South Entrance or walk under the arches to Granary Wharf where you will find the taxis on the lower water level – just cross the lock bridge in front of Bar Brasil. Twee & Drie (the boats) have sailed over from Amsterdam to ferry passengers between Granary Wharf & Leeds Dock. The Water Taxis run every 15 minutes and cost £1 per person, per journey. Children 5 and under ride free!

The annual Dragon Boat Race at Leeds Dock is the perfect opportunity to find your sea legs. The event sees teams of rowers of all abilities take to the water for the chance to win a trophy. Even if you’re not taking part in the race, street food vendors and entertainment flock to the area so you’re bound to find something that whets your appetite, promising a brilliant day by the water for all.

Immerse yourself into life on the water by renting a narrowboat. The beautiful narrowboat Benedict at Clarence Dock is available for long or short stays via Airbnb. A labour of love for over three years, ‘superhost’ Jonny has refurbished the boat into a magical retreat which he describes as a cross between a Gypsy Caravan and the Orient Express. Situated on a permanent mooring on a quiet arm of the dock, it's an ideal spot from which to explore the city or just cosy up and watch a film in front of the log-burning stove.

For more information on the best food and drink establishments to try while in Leeds visit 10 of the best places to eat in Leeds | Food and drink | The Guardian

Image of a paddleboarder on Leeds dock


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